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Cool, fruit-filled salsa a delicious option for a hot day

Recipe: White nectarines star in a fresh condiment -- or salad

Bowl of white and red salsa with blue chips on a yellow plate
This salsa features white nectarines but is equally good with yellow ones, or white or yellow peaches.
(Photos: Kathy Morrison)

It's a good thing there's so much fruit in season right now. The options to make something without turning on the oven or even the stovetop are much greater.

This salsa is one of my favorites for the hot summer months. The best stone fruit I've found to use it in is white nectarines, which are sweet but a little bland to me on their own. Put them together with some fresh peppers, herbs and red onion, however, and they brighten up considerably. (They also don't have to be peeled.) But use peaches (any color) or yellow nectarines if those are what look good to you at the market or store.

I like this salsa with blue chips, as shown in the photo, but it's spectacular as a condiment with barbecued chicken. Or pile it on some lettuce instead for a great salad.

Onion, cilantro, herbs, tomatoes and nectarines on a cutting board
Plenty of fresh summer produce in this salsa.

White Nectarine Salsa

Makes 2 cups


1/2 cup chopped fresh tomato (grape, cherry or regular size)

1/2 cup diced red onion or shallots

1 fresh  jalapeño or serrano pepper, seeded and diced small

1-1/2 tablespoon slivered fresh mint leaves

1-1/2 tablespoon slivered fresh basil leaves

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon fresh orange juice (or more lime juice)

2 firm-ripe nectarines, seeded and diced

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


In a medium bowl, stir together the diced tomato, onion, pepper, herbs and juices. Gently stir in the diced nectarine. Add some salt and pepper. Chill 1 hour to meld the flavors. Correct the seasonings before serving.

Note: This salsa tastes best the day it's made, but adding some more fresh lime juice can brighten up the leftovers.


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of June 4:

Because of the comfortable weather, it’s not too late to set out tomato and pepper seedlings as well as squash and melon plants. They’ll appreciate this not-too-hot weather. Just remember to water.

* From seed, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, melons, squash and sunflowers.

* Plant basil to go with your tomatoes.

* Transplant summer annuals such as petunias, marigolds and zinnias.

* It’s also a good time to transplant perennial flowers including astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia, salvia and verbena.

* Let the grass grow longer. Set the mower blades high to reduce stress on your lawn during summer heat. To cut down on evaporation, water your lawn deeply during the wee hours of the morning, between 2 and 8 a.m.

* Tie up vines and stake tall plants such as gladiolus and lilies. That gives their heavy flowers some support.

* Dig and divide crowded bulbs after the tops have died down.

* Feed summer flowers with a slow-release fertilizer.

* Mulch, mulch, mulch! This “blanket” keeps moisture in the soil longer and helps your plants cope during hot weather.

* Thin grapes on the vine for bigger, better clusters later this summer.

* Cut back fruit-bearing canes on berries.

* Feed camellias, azaleas and other acid-loving plants.

* Trim off dead flowers from rose bushes to keep them blooming through the summer. Roses also benefit from deep watering and feeding now. A top dressing of aged compost will keep them happy. It feeds as well as keeps roots moist.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushier plants with many more flowers in September.

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